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tv   Today in Washington  CSPAN  May 6, 2011 6:00am-9:00am EDT

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>> i would hope that there is active introspection going on now in light of what's happened recently, to take pressure -- fresher approach to the relation with afghanistan. since we know there've been meetings with president karzai, and there will be other meetings, i hope that this matter will be laid to rest. one thing i should state quite clearly, i don't think if anyone in the pakistani establishment that is looking to have new
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taliban government in kabul, because that would be horrendous for pakistan itself. >> i agree with much of what shuja said, but from my pakistani friends, i want to take him at this is not directed at shuja, but the pakistani leadership swings a lot about their understanding of the problem in afghanistan because they have many questions in pakistan. i do not believe that they do understand afghanistan's questions. because to say that they're all posh terms is to miss some extremely important differences in the context in which they have been functioning for the last several decades. and in particular, pakistan is a federated state in which many are living under a unique legal system and circumstances and so forth that is set apart from a central government and so forth and so on and so on.
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afghan pashtuns have never lived that way and that is not the relation to the central state and is not the way they see the problem. i do think that a fair amount of the communication difficulty that we have when you strip away different interests is that the pakistanis tend to be contemptuous of the notion that we can understand anything about afghanistan and supercilious about their own comprehension of it. and yet i think they bring to that understanding a great degree of category mistake by imagining that these are all sort of the same people. >> i want to build off the fact that what happened over the weekend, it is in some ways a defining moment. it creates an opportunity but i think you have to take a look at now this is perhaps an context of what happened over the weekend and what will happen over the next six months. clearly what happened over the weekend sense for the first time a very powerful message that
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america is learning how to better fight this war on terrorism, that we are competent, that we cannot be more confident. and perhaps that once again we can be feared. i'm sure that our friends who are allied with us, woke up monday morning and said, this is why we are allied with americans. they have the ability to learn and improve. for the people sitting on the fence, it's like they may be really getting good at this, and maybe now is the time to make a decision to get closer. for our allies i'm sure most people in a kind of woke up on monday morning and said, what i'm going to do today to make sure that we are still alive at the end of the day based on the treasure trove of information that we may have gotten out of that compound? so it provides that kind of an opportunity and a redefining of the u.s. image in terms of competency and confidence as we move forward, which will then we can build off of what's going to
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happen. this is why this whole talk about an accelerated withdrawal of troops from afghanistan kind of scares me. we shouldn't be pulling out. we can further enhance the image that we built over the weekend by what we do this summer in afghanistan to show again, we are persistent, we are competent and confident that we're going to be successful and will put the resources in so that we will be feared. feared and respected because of our capabilities. that is the opportunity that is now present for us to redefine our perception. i can tell you, sitting on the committee for eight or nine years, it was just kind of a cancer every time the community would come in and you have to ask the question, if the directors endorse someone else, the dni, okay, tell us about the search for bin laden, what do we know? and 47 or eight years it was kind of like, we really don't
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know but if we've got to make a guess, we think he is in this part of pakistan. and it's kind of like, you know what? now we know. military acted competently, they did a great job and were successful. take that, build on this summer with the work fred has been doing. it gives us an opportunity to redefine who we are. >> i want to ask your question that's a bit out of our scope but i can't resist because i want to do what you are going to see. sorry, guys. it's really about what i am interested in. we got bin laden. important in many ways, less important than others. i think there's very little debate about that reality. but the way we got him, persistent intelligence, following the tracks, information about the courier from khalid sheikh mohammed. we haven't picked up a
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high-value target and a couple of years. and we don't have any interrogation program going on. what does this mean for the next guy? and i don't want to take anything away from the president, because he deserves all the kudos, especially the our navy seals, but what about next time? >> next time will be harder. i give the president tremendous amount of credit because i do believe that he gave the direction to leon panetta that said maintaining a high priority, i want to maintain a high priority on capturing or killing bin laden. i believe that the president gave that direction to leon, and every time we got brief, he made clear that was still the priority. the bottom of what he has done is he is given the intelligence community fewer tools to be able to do their job against bin laden, more against other high-value targets.
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it is a combination of not being able to use the -- that in any interrogation strategy at all, and the other thing that is still out there that has been written about today and one of the first things that cross my mind, is i hope the president and eric holder move back from the threat to prosecute the cia folks who may be engaged. the cia folks who were involved in the process, you know, congress, justice, these people did what the american governme government, elected government wanted them to do. and as long as these people are still under the threat of prosecution, you still have a lot of folks within the community who are risk averse to taking the kind of chances that will give us the kind of information and intelligence that we need to be successful in the future. the president gave the right
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direction. is pulling away the tools that enable them to do the job effectively. >> i just want to comment on this. i think high-value targets, interrogation is very appealing to the kind of, so you get the guy, he spills the beans and then you act on that information. but haven't explained the success in catching bin laden as accusative knowledge that has been collected by the u.s. and the experience and training and knowing the country, knowing the people, working with locals. and a network that has maybe been established inside pakistan. that has worked fairly independently from all appearances of the pakistani intelligence services, which is why the raymond davis? became such a huge issue. so i think, yes, it delegation
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-- and care of their -- the nuts and bolts that really matters. the analysis of that information. because it's not just the technology, it's the people behind the technology that matters. we are seeing improvements. >> i would agree with that 100%. it wasn't a single, it was good, hard work. i drove in from dulles from the airport on monday, and i was doing a radio interview and i was telling the guy exactly what you just said. the success on sunday was the result of a lot of hard work by people that started eight, nine years ago. i got done and the cab driver said, i'm one of those guys. i said what do you mean? he said i was in the afpak region in 2003, 2004, working for the u.s. government. i don't know what he was doing. what he was doing translation or
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whatever. but he served his time serving our country. and he said thank you. but it's amazing. fred, you know some of these guys probably. now he's back private cab and u.s. seven, eight years ago he said, i'm tremendously proud, and he says i feel part of the ownership for what happened on sunday. >> remarkable. very good. i want to open up the floor to questions. remember, we haven't changed these rules. identify yourself, raise your hand. i will call for you. wait for the mic back. brief and succinct. you're right in front of me. >> frank fletcher. my question is speedy's and if you're dragging into someone, please do tell. >> i wouldn't be sure. we will see what the panel -- there are any number of people who speak and write saying a lot and was assembled and he was
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inspiration. general hayden spoke at a conference sponsored by the marine corps university and i will paraphrase, that he was, the other week, last week, that he was an inspiration and a civil but he was more than that, that he was still capable with a circle of engaging an operational plan. that doesn't take away from the fact that there are franchises and affiliates, that their people that could act as the lead with al qaeda without his direction. what does that say about if this is true? about al qaeda's organizational capability and the importance of others? >> my answers, my initial answer is always unsatisfactory but the short answer is we won't know until we see. because we are going to see probably some kind of our
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five-point out within al qaeda central, although i suspect house and we will take over. he is, he is a more gifted person and he is in many respects a better writer ration than the law. is not anyway an inspirational figure. and he does not have the credential in the same way. mac struggles within the top leadership, but i think that we'll have to see how it plays out in terms of effect on operational capability. we should keep in mind with killed something like 10 al qaeda operational directors over the past several years. he does have an effect on the organization, but nine have stepped up or 10 have stepped up, and the operations have continued. i would also refer you to a struggle example of 2006 in iraq when we killed abu massari, was
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the founder in iraq and not only was he the inspiration for the ideologue for but he was the operational commander for it. and his role was very important. he was replaced by a man who turned out to be a much more effective operator and to be pursuing the strategy similar to what al-zawahiri adventuresome with much more ruthless as an effectiveness. i'm not suggesting that's going to be the case here but am saying that i think we need to be very cautious in imagining that because you remove them even if he were operational and relevant, the operation will be great. perhaps. almost certainly in the short term, but these organizations tend to be a resilient and that's what i think the point that shuja made and at peak made, are incredibly important not only with regard to intelligence, it's why this is a long struggle. it's why this is a long fight. it's why we have to stop looking
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for the exit ramp, and looking for the okay, now we have the excuse to declare victory and leave. these are extremely tough, entrenched, resilient organizations that regenerate leadership. they are designed to do that. and they have been at this for a long time. al qaeda central is the epitome of that. we are not done with these guys by any stretch of imagination, even though this was a very good hit and it's very satisfying. >> over the last number of years would become much more concerned about the franchise operations, and if there's any retaliation in the short term, quote unquote in this event, i think it will come out of a kind in the arabian peninsula, because they will not be as significant as affected by bin laden's death. go ahead. >> if i could just add to that,
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i think if you're looking for a brand figure to replace osama bin laden, particularly in this age of global connectivity, maliki is by the one that will fit the bill. but also i think as fred was income it's a long fight and we have to be prepared to take the message of islam back into the islamic world. and to use islam to fight it at the committee level, at the provincial level and at the national level. >> what do you mean? >> which means to help people understand that what is being purveyed in the name of islam, by these groups in the heartland of pakistan, is not islam. it doesn't fit in with the teachings of the koran or the prophet, but there is another way of looking at religion and
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using it to improve their lives. and that brings me to the final point which is, unless we support good governance in these countries, all is lost here if we continue to work with autocratic regimes and look the other way because they are serving other business, we have defeated the whole enterprise. >> i just wanted to piggyback on that a moment and say if you look around the world the last 30, 35 years, the iranian revolution and regimes that have actually actively propagated this idea of islam which is at odds about it is practiced by most people, the three come to mind are, in fact, pakistan, saudi arabia and iran. so the largest significance of this, asking that reorientation which shuja spoke about to sort of outside of pakistan's borders is precisely that. it's perversion of islam has
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been peddled by these three regimes much more than any other. >> but there's a difference. i'm sorry, stealing away your question time. i'm sorry, it's interesting but there's a difference. i want you to correct me if i'm wrong here, but iran and saudi arabia are doing this as a matter of, i do what's called national i did because i think that's an injustice to sort of the people of iran and saudi arabia as well, this is a national political agenda that is wrapped up with religion that has a lot to do with the identity of the state. in pakistan it seems to be much less integral to pakistani national, and much more having to do with sort of a mistaken sense about exercising a right of strategic options. am i wrong about that? >> i would say yes. >> is that i am wrong or right? >> i mean, at a personal level,
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the level of society it is true that this sort of not as to the prejudice question which goes back to the foundation of pakistan, and pakistan a struggle with this. there are two competing ideas. in a nutshell you want to be which we can call the idea pakistan, which is it's a homeland for muslims. and islam doesn't have to be -- it doesn't have to be shot in every aspect of the state. there was always the competing idea that you can use the shorthand idea which is if that's all you wanted, why do you need a new country? and so this is been going on for a long time, especially since the 1970s i would argue story with others, but accelerating. decide which assorted said it's not enough to just be a homeland for muslims. we need to have this kind of super turbocharged identity, has been great grand.
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at the content. i'm not saying it's black and white but it's a contest, and that deeper ideological, the question of who am i that you raised that exist in iran and exist in saudi arabia exists i was a equally in pakistan. >> again, with apologies to the audience because we really would like to hear your questions, it's very interesting for me as someone who came from pakistan that the part of pakistan that has the greatest population which is now bangladesh, has actually reversed direction and has actively and correctly in my view separated religion from the state. and then reverse various other things that happen in pakistan that they inherited, including the order of precedence which establishes rank order and i put the civilians way higher than the military. perhaps the lesson of pakistan needs to learn is from their
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cousins 1000 miles to the east. >> i think it's important to make a sharp distinction between iran and saudi arabia on the one hand and pakistan on the other, because granted the debate that goes on in pakistan about what the argument is about islam, i would submit that although one man bought a particular debate, it is broader than the question of which particular school of islam should be running the show. in iran and saudi arabia that's not the case. the iranian regime is based in the entire exclusively on the principle of eight very, very specific islamist are ready ideology that serves as the justification for the current regime in a way that there is no parallel to that frankly and pakistan in my view. in saudi arabia you have the wahhabi school of thought which
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has been the integral with the monarchy in the late 18th century. so you have the commitment to to particular interpretations of islam, and i'm prepared to argue the case that both of them in fact are a radical in the long view of mainstream islam. and i think the debate in pakistan is more open than that. i think the question pakistanis could have a debate about the role of islam in the definition of the state and how it functions your that is broader than simply which version of a heretical violent misinterpretation of the koran you want to pursue. >> we're going to come back. i'm going to open the floor to questions again we're going to come back to this question of how the u.s. is helpful on islam because i can't leave it hanging there because i think -- gary?
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>> thanks. gary mitchell from the mitchell report. i want to ask a two-part question. the first is from some distance, meaning weeks, months, which factor will have had the greatest negative influence on al qaeda? the arab spring or the assassination of bin laden? second, if you were given a poisoned dart and you had an opportunity to aim it at one of three people, mullah omar, haqqani or another, how would you use your dart and what does that tell us about your view of what would have the greatest impact on this long struggle
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that fred reminded us we are in an better remember that we are in? >> always provocative. do you want to start this one? >> can i have three darts? [laughter] would not use it against zarqawi because of the haqqani network is an extremely resilient and structured for succession. so killing a single leader in the movement would be, again, satisfied but unlimited impact. i am torn between whether to use it between mullah omar or the other pickett's charge because i don't know yet what direction al-zawahiri will take. my inclination will be to use it against mullah omar who has shown himself an effective operator as well as an effective ideologue, as well as an effective inspirational figure.
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but that wouldn't end the insurgency either. but if we're doing targeted killings, that's what i would do. that having been said i'm not looking for a poisoned dart. any of those would be satisfied but none of them are going to bring us to success in this endeavor and it will take the kind of long struggle we're talking about. to answer your other question quickly, if the arab spring moves in the direction that we hope that it will, direction of more representative governments, more inclusive governments in the middle east, and a general beginning of the end of arab testers, then that would've been a far more significant blow to al qaeda over the long term than the killing of bin laden. >> right of here. >> thank you. many people are asking questions
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that osama bin laden should of been brought to justice in 2001, not in 2011. but still it came to the shock of millions of people because their lives were affected, including millions in india. now, it didn't come as a surprise to me because i've been saying this to the last 10 years to the white house, state department, everywhere. that osama bin laden was living an elite life. and protected by the isi and the military. >> what's the question? >> now, what am asking really now two things. one, pakistan cannot say that he was not only is not in pakistan. so now would we go from here? can we trust pakistan in the future because many more terrorists are still there as president obama said that will get them, including india is
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asking about three of them who are blind attack mumbai. >> i think we've covered this pretty nicely, but shuja, p., he said no baby bath water. he said strategic moment in which pakistan to make a choice. anything to add to that quickly? >> we know the strengths and weaknesses of the relationship with pakistan. i think that we continue and we tried to do everything we can as a couple of these guys has outlined how we improve and strengthen that relationship. you do not cut off the relationship with pakistan. >> i'm sorry, i keep nodding at people but i'm fully nodding but i will remember that you had your hand up. let's try that back corner. >> sorry, i'm going back one question, to gary's question, if i may.
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i would melt both the questions into one. killing an individual doesn't kill the idea. i think where to kill the idea. that's why the arab spring is very important. and that's what we have to look at even countries like pakistan that have the same characteristics which is something like 60% of the population, 60 million of the population of 180 million in pakistan are the youth. and they're connected to the world. they're very high expectations because they know how everyone lives. we have to address them through the government and twist the arm of the government, convinced and get their attention. because killing is not the solution. the solution is to provide opportunities to people so that they can then take over and run their own lives the way they want to. >> that's the reasons why it's been so heartbreaking to see so many people who should know better, suggest now the
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president has proven himself and he can afford not to step up on libya and syria. that's just such a strategic mistake, and i don't think that proving himself will last in the corner there. >> thank you very much for the wonderful discussion. i have heard two of you on -- >> could you identify yourself? >> my name is -- i'm an academic, not -- >> stand up. >> i am not a policy analyst. i'm an academic. like lots of other people, i have been put to watching the developments, and the discourses about what we should do here, what pakistan should give you, and i've been trying to collaborate it with something else, which is what is happening in the vernacular news bulletin, in pakistan? i found that to be a very, very interesting and a very great
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educated experienced in the last 40 country and for days. it began with just 80 now that i say what is the evidence, what are all these things, what does the president said? i'm talking about people around main talk shows. the second day do was a stinky income and the discourse changed to why aren't we taking the credit for this operation? >> i think we get the thrust. yes. >> i think what is fascinating to see that the discourse is changing everyday, and today there's a very strong sense of reappropriation of trying to get a sense of identity about where to go. and i'm guessing that i think the conversations here is very important to hear what is going on. >> thank you. comments? nope. gotcha. thank you very much, mamma. my elevator friend here.
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this gentleman. >> i'm jim bernstein with walkabout development solutions, and you're right, our moderator told me in the other i was going to the 12th floor and it was a very good moderator for that conference last night. >> thank you for saying that on c-span. >> i agree with you. i'm enjoying this, kind of the way i enjoy watching espn during the playoffs. one of the characters that we get in this meaning, people take an event present event and they dissected. and what does it all mean. there's a rather famous futurist who once said those of us who are deaf and by the presence can't get the future. i would like to throw out three short words to you, and i'd like to hear you comment on them. food, water, opium.
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and 150 million plus people with nuclear weapons are going to run out of water, going to run out of food and are increasingly influenced by opium. we're talking about a guy who's already dead. >> okay. shuja? >> i couldn't agree with you more. i testified on hill two days ago and i said until and unless you change the economic and political landscape in the case of pakistan, you're not going to be able to make any change in the future. you can't create the possibility of change, which means addressing the question of energy, food, water, and not just within the country but regionally, with afghanistan, china. these are huge issues, but these are the difficulty and the nuanced issues that were referred to. we are always looking for the short term solution, or can we
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throw money at the problem. and as i said there, quoting my favorite philosopher, the beatles, money can't buy you love. so we are constantly looking for that love which is just not going to be there until we can help change the underlying conditions. >> i'd like to come to the defense of bike fellow panelist and, of course, myself on this particular question, because when we talk about what needs to be done in or to build good governance in pakistan where target what needs to be done in october pakistan address those problems you have raised. if the question is why is pakistan having those problems, a huge part of it, a variety of other things, you have very bad governance. and so you government making very bad decisions on behalf of its people. you have people unable to voice their own concerns. and give it a variety of corruption and varies other things that harm the body politic. what we are talking about is
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trying to get some of the things that make pakistani governments so bad, which include this very debate about islamism and the role of islam in the state which has served as sort of a line in part and an excuse for not talking about how the state should actually be governed. so i think i agree with you about the need to look for the long-term, but i think probably i could quote another philosopher saying, you can't make it to the long-term if you don't get there from here either. so i think we need to see this speed is i don't know that when. >> i will sing it. >> thank you. >> let me just add to that. i think we have talked about some of those, you know, we talked about the demographics, the ever spring, the future of islamists is him, and this is what i think we tried to why we put this event together is the
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death of bin laden hopefully hopefully becomes the catalyst for us not to talk about the death of bin laden, but to talk about these larger issues but it gives us the catalyst, i think a number of us of all use the term opportunity. this is opportunity for us to hope we raise the discussion and raise the debate, raise the discussion with pakistan about how we move forward in the kind of relationship that we have. you added three other things that very much a part of that whole discussion, food and water and these types of things. absolutely are part of all the dynamics that's often get lost, especially here in the u.s. where everybody used the term by quarterly results. when i came out of the business from, okay, how are going to do this quarter. now we're all looking at, watching tv and see what happened to the price of gold or silver in the last two hours? we're getting instantaneous feedback which is drawn as with the larger debate, the larger
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long-term which is really we should be talking about. >> the gentleman right there in front. >> i am formally world bank. i am just an observer right now. about 10 days, a week or 10 days before the events of last weekend, i think of as "the wall street journal" which shocked me in his brazenness, the senior pakistani official, might've been the target himself, made a public appeal to karzai to drop the allegiance with the united states and join pakistan in pursuing a strategic axis with china. my question to the panel is, given the events of last weekend, do you think it more or less likely that such a statement could be made today? >> no one is stepping up your. >> i'd be happy to respond to that. apparently that was a strike to
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pakistani prime minister in his meeting with the president of afghanistan, but i've since learned that it wasn't he who made that statement, but a senior foreign office official who raised the possibility. it was about as stark as it was reported. i don't think it makes sense to have an either/or approach. china has an important role in the region, and has committed economically to afghanistan, has plans for the future for afghanistan, and has a very long relationship with pakistan. indeed, it has emotional and economic relationship with india, which one should not forget and one should applaud, $65 billion worth of trade a year. so china is a huge player in the region, and for anyone to ignore china would be a mistake. but i don't think it's a question of either/or.
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>> i just want to say that, i mean, the relationship is hard to exaggerate how important it is to pakistan. china is pakistan quote unquote all weather friend. and if you look again at public opinion poll in pakistan you find, despite all the american aid, american approval ratings about 70% for china, 84%. so not just in a government but also among the people, china is seen as solid, rocksolid reliable partner. and just one thing about the article. it wasn't said publicly that it's not as though the premise or the president said that at a press conference. it was in private meetings. >> thank you. mohammed with the voice of america. my question is a two-part question.
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first about the use in pakistan as shuja mentioned. many of pakistan and not only in pakistan but in the islamic world believe that 9/11 was a drama. i've been following the social media since osama bin laden's death. many still believe that this is also a drama. so where do we go? secondly, just today the court committee meeting, after the corps commander meeting, general kayani issued a statement saying that such an operation and pakistani borders is not going to be tolerated in the future. where are we going? do we see any cooperation in the future? >> will just talking about this before the event. >> the first part, which is about the conspiracy theory, -- [inaudible] >> i think that sort of, i personally think they should have been released. i do think that would have
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convinced the most diehard conspiracy theorist because these are people who genuinely believe that 9/11 was an inside job by the americans. there's no convincing them. i think there's shades of conspiracy theorists and it may help convince some some of the people in the middle. i think the photographs are anyway going to come out and i think if they have been released by the u.s., the u.s. would have been shaping the discourse. and if they are released by julian assange, that i think the impact will be much, much more negatives i do think that was a mistake. as for the statement, i was surprised by the belligerent. i think shuja would be better placed to explain what the dynamics of it. >> i, too, was surprised by the statement. but if you recall it was a very
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similar statement that was issued on march 17 after the drones attack of march 16 that killed 41 people. and that said more or less the same thing. so, and early conveying message to a domestic audience much more than to the u.s. i think the fact that this was just a statement and that there was no action, there was no shutting down of the pipeline in kabul, for instance, of this applies to the afghan war, nor cancellation of the strategic dialogue that is still scheduled a little later this spring, is a good sign. it means that they got out of the system. perhaps that's the reason serious attempt at trying to find a way to begin a dialogue with the united states. again, i do want to go back also if i may to the question about
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the role. the vernacular me, particularly in pakistan and to some extent in india is competing for space. so pakistan has over 60 channels that are clamoring for a very narrow band of audience. and each one tries to outdo the others. so it's like, you know, if you have msnbc and fox and you multiply that by 10, that would be what pakistan and to some extent india has. and so, they are constantly trying to drum up the public in one way or the other. and you don't find the considered analysis that should be there that will help people understand. this is part of the process of maturing, and perhaps they will get over it. >> add one thing to it. my first reaction to the
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question, or to the statement coming out is, what's new? how may times have we got to that where we have done something, the pakistanis make a harsh statement and nothing changes. the question that i might have for the two of you would, how long can the pakistani government get away with saying, you know, no more, we're not going to tolerate it. how may times have they said that? that's what i get nervous about. >> i can respond to that, congressman. this is not a government statement. this is, the issue in pakistan is a dysfunctional what are two separate nodes of power. when the prime minister having left the country and all you're left with is the responsibly that has fallen out of the military to respond. there isn't a single voice.
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[inaudible] >> i mean, what else was he going to say? that's less troubling than general kayani's statement. question right here and i think this will be, enforcement will be our last one. we have to shut down. >> i was in the u.s. government a longtime and now i'm in the private sector. we've been here about 90 minutes and talking about the future of the u.s. relationship with pakistan. and it seems to be one of the issues that has not been mentioned at all, try to talk about safety million young people. i do know how many of those have been educated or at least have been exposed, but that strikes me as a real serious impediment to fundamental change not only in u.s. with a ship of pakistan but pakistan ability -- >> is an interesting thing, you bring up a very good point because they're sort of a -- we
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spend a lot of time talking about islamist education and about the pernicious influence for example, the saddest money does come in for such things. and it's really kind of gone by the wayside. which is a shame because i do think it is combined wayside. let me to our panel has to say. >> i have a fairly starting -- starling statistic on the. and 947137, at last count it more than 13,000. that gives you a sense of the sort of scale. most of these are not problematic in any way. the best as the nicene, 10 to 50%. but i think the problem, 10 to 15% the most famous ones. but beyond that i think the problem as several pakistani
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scholars have pointed out, it was the, education that is nonreligious pretend not to look at them because we sort of are more concerned. is your normal government school curriculum. what does that teach about pakistani history. what does that teach them about non-muslims, particularly indians. to what degree has this mindset that we have spoken about needs to be changed, hasn't been allowed particularly under, to berkeley all the way down to the schoolbooks and what is the impact of that going to be when these young people who have had their minds shaped by the completely different curriculum come of age is anybody's guess. >> i agree. they have been talked about and they grew exponentially during a jihad against the soviet because there was a reason to create them in the border region in particular. most of them are not problematic that i think the problem quite truly is the education system.
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it's not sexy enough and it's a very long-term endeavor to pakistan could have a new policy in 2006 for changing the curriculum. the good news is it's only now starting to happen and it's now been privatized and the private copies will not be able to compete to produce the textbooks. on my trip to pakistan in march i brought back with me english and other textbooks, classroom, class type and class 10 i've been going through those. it's quite interesting to see what they teach and what they don't teach. and what they don't teach is a history of pakistan and the subcontinental context. so it is always looking to the west. and i think that when you do change. so pakistanis don't get a very narrow view and a vision of the place in the region where they belong. >> the other challenger for the
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united states, and our european allies, we are completely unwilling to make comments about this on a policy level because it is culturally insensitive. and so, that is a big challenge as well. that's another larger issue. i'm going to give you a teaser. we said next big challenge is al qaeda and the arabian peninsula. on may 17 we will have an event here at aei, not yet posted, on yemen and aqap which i commend to you fred will be running that. we have written an enormous amount on this topic this week. i commend to you the work of fred and others, but also i know peter has written in and had some work on it, shuja as well can be found at "the atlantic" council's website, our own critical threat team, tom donnelly, i could keep going to i'm going to be leaving people out but there's a lot to read, a
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lot to see. and i refer you to our website and her facebook page, and, of course, everybody's twitter account. so, with that little advertising let me thank our outstanding panel us and our terrific audience. thank you very much for being here today. [applause] ? >> michele bachmann is your i understand, she's thinking of running for president.
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which is weird because i hear she was born in canada. [laughter] >> yes, michelle, this is how it starts. >> once explained his, the view of president obama's appearance at the correspondents dinner is our most viewed ever. watch it again on light at our youtube channel. >> on wednesday president obama met with wounded war veterans at the white house for the launch of the wounded warrior project's annual soldier ride. soldier ride is a program that gives bicycles who wounded war veterans with disabilities. this is the 50 of the soldier ride project. it's 15 minutes. >> ladies and gentlemen, the
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president of the united states. [applause] [applause] >> mr. president, my fellow wounded warriors, families and friends, good afternoon. what a great day. it's a real pleasure and honor for me to join you for this wonderful event. i know just how difficult it can be to adapt to a new lifestyle after a debilitating injury. you can do all the things you used to do, you don't view the strength and your that was there during their military service. and that is why i love the wounded warrior soldier ride. when these vets are out riding, they are strong once again as they power over the miles. they once again dominate airspace, demonstrating the spirit and tenacity that makes them out nation's finest.
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soldier ride shows these disabled veterans they are the essence of competitive spirit and physical ability. this ride is also about raising awareness of the challenges facing our injured servicemen and women when they return home. it allows the community to show their appreciation for those who put their lives on the line for our freedom. in 2004 while i was recovering at walter reed, i met a young senator from my home state of illinois. he didn't show up with an entourage or with any cameras. it was just in coming to meet with the wounded and our family. he would stand next to our hospital bed, it was really important was he just listen to us. he wanted to know what he could do to survive. you see, this was so different from so many of the other vips who would visit. this center cared, spent time listening and then worked really hard on the veterans affairs committee to make our worry is
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lives and those other family better. he honored us with his commitment. today, i am proud that he is our commander-in-chief. it is my pleasure to introduce to you the president of the united states of america, president obama. [cheers and applause] thank you. good afternoon, everybody. welcome to the white house. thank you, tammy, for the kind introduction, but more importantly, for your extraordinary service to our country in iraq, in illinois, and now as assistant secretary of the va, where you're a champion for your fellow wounded warriors. god bless you. we are so thankful for tammy duckworth. give her a big round of applause. [applause] i was proud to kick off this soldier ride two years ago. i'm just as thrilled to be
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kicking it off today. i'm pleased that we're joined by a number of members of congress here. the sun is coming out just as we start. we're also joined by the vice chairman of the joint chiefs of staff and one of my top advisors over the last several years. i couldn't be more grateful to him, general jim "hoss" cartwright. please give him a big round of applause. [applause] now, this is one of the most inspiring events that we do at the white house. we're joined by folks from every service. we've got army. [cheers and applause] >> and we've got some navy folks. [cheers and applause] >> with the air force. [cheers and applause] >> you know we've got some marines. and we've got some coast guard. [cheers and applause] and just as importantly, we are joined by those who serve and sacrifice alongside you, and that is all our outstanding military families.
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[applause] now, you've all got your gear on. you're on your bikes. you all look pretty sharp. thank you. you're ready to go. so i'm not going to hold you back too long here with a long speech. but it is important to remember what this day is about. today is a reminder, as michelle and jill biden have already said, that every american, every single person in this country, can do something to support our remarkable troops and their families. everybody can do something. so seven years ago, a bartender from long island had the same idea. he wasn't from a military family. he had never served in the military. but he knew that he owed our military something. he was just an ordinary american who was grateful for the service of all those who wear the uniform. and he said, i just wanted to give something back. so he jumped on his bike and
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rode across the country, over 5,000 miles, to raise funds and awareness for our wounded warriors. today, there are soldier rides all across america giving our wounded warriors the confidence and support they need to recover. that's the difference a single person can make. today we want to thank chris carney and everyone from the wounded warrior project for reminding us of our obligations to each other as americans. give them a big round of applause. [applause] and today is also a tribute to all of you -- a generation that has written your own extraordinary chapter in the american story. our nation has been at war now for nearly 10 years. tour after tour, year after year, you've done your duty. you've met every challenge, from the deserts of iraq to the mountains of afghanistan. you've risked everything.
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and you've carried in your hearts the memory of fallen heroes who gave everything. you've earned your place among the greatest of generation of americans. and we saw that again this past weekend when, thanks to the courage and precision of our forces, the terrorist who started this war and who took so many innocent lives learned that america does not forget; america will ensure that justice is done. [applause] of course, for our riders here today, coming home from war marked the beginning of another battle -- the battle to recover. to stand again. to relearn, in some cases, the simple things that are the true pleasures of life, dancing with your spouse, or holding your children. in many ways, this might have been the toughest battle they've ever fought.
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but i want all of you to know something. you inspire me. you inspire everybody here. michelle and i treasure the moments that we've had with some of you and your families. corporal nickolas edinger is here. where's nickolas? right there, right in the middle. he was one of our special guests when michelle and i hosted a recent dinner for military leaders at the white house. he was serving in afghanistan when an ied blast cost him one of his legs. but he's here today as part of his journey to recovery. and i want to just welcome nickolas back. private first class corey kent. where's corey? corey is right there. i met corey during one of my visits to walter reed last year. and it was my honor to pin a purple heart on him. he's lost both legs. but he's working hard to recover, and he's here today, ready to ride. so corey, you are an inspiration. ted wade is here. ted, where are you? right there.
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after sustaining multiple injuries in iraq, ted's doctors did not think he would survive. but he persevered. he pulled through. and i was honored that ted and his wife sarah joined us last year when i signed legislation for veterans and caregivers. i'm pleased that ted and sarah are back with us again today because i can report that starting next week, our veterans, wounded warriors and caregivers can start applying for the support that you need and deserve. we are going to get this done, and we're very proud of that. [applause] now, sarah once said of ted, just like he needed a team in the military to accomplish the mission, he needs a team at home for the longer war. and so i say to all of you today, we're going to keep building that team that you need for recovery. we're determined to take care of you as well as you've taken care of us.
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so to all the riders here today, i want to say, as your commander-in-chief and as an american, thank you. we are grateful for you. you represent the very best in america. and in your fight to recover and in the ride that you're about to begin, we see the values and virtues that make our country great. we may take a hit. we may endure great loss. but we are a strong and resilient people. we push on. we persevere. we're confident in our cause. and we know that, like generations of americans before us, we will emerge stronger than before. so god bless you all. god bless the united states of america. and with that, let's get this thing started. i think i've got a horn. [applause] >> are you already?
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one, two, three. [cheers and applause] ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
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♪ ♪ ♪. ..
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♪ >> today on c-span2, the bureau of labor statistics releases the monthly job figures. commissioner keith hall will be at the joint economic committee to talk about the unemployment numbers. we'll have live coverage at 9:30 a.m. eastern time. and over on c-span, the co-chairs of the national commission on fiscal responsibility and reform, erskine bowles and alan simpson, will discuss their recommendations for balancing the federal budget and improving the economy. they'll be speaking at the investment company institute. live coverage begins at 10:30 a.m. eastern on c-span. >> this week on booktv on c-span2, francis fukuyama on the origins of government on "after words" conservative blogger
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andrew breitbart discusses his transformation to a self-described cultural warrior. he's interviewed by armstrong williams. also in this weekend in america aflame, david goldfield on the role of religion leading up to the civil war. look for the complete schedule at, and sign up for booktv alert. >> at the annual national rifle association meeting in pittsburgh, nra vice president wayne lapierre called for the resignation of attorney general eric holder. he accused the justice department of mishandling an investigation of gun sales allowing guns to reach mexican drug cartels. this is an hour and a half. >> today amid swirling reports of a growing government scandal, most of the major media has ignored news that our federal government sanctioned the running of illegal guns into
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mexico. leaked from within atf and evidence from congressional committees are building. they should be with investigated by every news organization in this country. we deserve to know the truth. please watch. >> they blamed honest, law-abiding gun dealers for a river of guns. >> this war is being waged with gun withs purchased not here, but in the united states, many from gun shops that line our borders. >> they blamed us for a myth they created, but was exposed by the nra. >> nearly 90% -- >> 90%? >> 90%. >> more than 90% of the guns recovered in mexico come from the united states. >> and they blamed the second amendment to advance their own agenda. >> there's one issue where mexico needs your cooperation. and that is consider reinstating
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a full weapons ban. [applause] >> turns out this numbers game has atf's name written all over it. they were the ones who openedded a floodgate of guns using a strategy called letting guns walk. thousands of guns ended up in the hands of the drug cartels. it was called operation fast and furious. >> it looks like the agency was doing this on purpose. the government actually encouraged gun dealers to sell multiple firearms to known and suspected traffickers. >> atf strategy was to let the guns walk, track them across the border and then take down a major cartel but keep it all a secret from the mexican government. it was a strategy doomed to fail from the start. >> the atf screwed up. it's up to the atf to follow up, to see who's really the money behind it. and as far as i can tell, that's
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the ball that got dropped. >> attorney dick degurn especiallies carter's company in houston that was falsely labeled as one of the biggest source of firepower for the cartels. >> bill carter was angry and felt very used by the atf. because they thought they were doing exactly what atf wanted them to do. they'd do what was called the stall and call. they'd stall the purchaser, call the atf and say there was a suspicious sale going on here. and often carter would have acted on that suspicion and not acted on the sales except they were encouraged to go through the sales by the atf agents. in fact, on some occasions the atf asked the store people to follow the purchasers out to the parking lot. get a license number if you can. >> but carter's country also shared the same concerns echoed
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in damaging e-mails sent from a gun shop owner in phoenix to the atf last year and recently obtained by senator grassley. the unnamed owner wrote that he wanted to help atf with this investigation but not if it risked all the safety of the agents who protect our country. >> you don't let guns walk i've never let guns walk. a lot of people are going to get hurt between the time we let 'em go and the time they're recovered again. >> atf agents who confronted their bosses over and over again about the gun-walking strategy could no longer remain silent and spoke with cbs news. >> i just knew it wasn't going to end well. there's no way it could. >> then on december 10, 2010, their worst nightmare came true. border patrol agent brian terry was gunned down. >> i felt guilty. >> to assault rifles atf let
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walk were found at the crime scene, and all these agents want is for the family of agent brian terry to know the truth. >> i've done everything that i can for them to get the truth. after this i don't know what else i can do. but i hope they get it. >> but the truth has been hard to get. although these documents confirm what agent dodson and other insiders are saying, that the gun-walking strategy was approved all the way to the justice department, that's not what the administration says. >> we cannot have a situation where guns are allowed to walk, and identify made that -- i've made that clear to the united states attorneys as well as the agents in charge. >> i did not authorize it. eric holder, the attorney general, did not authorize it. >> originally, they tried to blame the gun dealers. then when it became obvious this was allowed, each time we've tried to go up the chain to find out what were they thinking and why would they think this was okay, we get stopped from going
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to the next level. >> in fact, chairman issa is now threat bing to begin content proceed -- contempt proceedings because atf has refused to turn over documents to his committee. >> at this point, we believe it goes to the top level of the administration's call appointees. >> i think it's a case of stonewalling. >> senator grassley has also made clear, any claim by the justice department that atf never knowingly approved or allowed the sale of assault weapons to purchasers is simply not credible because of new evidence he's obtained. >> they wanted to prove there were guns flowing to mexico, so they set up an illegal pipeline. when does it stop being law enforcement and start being a criminal enterprise? innocent people are dying. >> i'm not surprised given it's the atf. it has always been a rogue agency. look at what they did in waco. >> i think this instance is probably one of the darkest days in the u.s. history.
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>> we love this country. we respect its leaders. respect requires truth, and the straightforward, simple truth is this: when it comes to the obama administration, we have had it. we've had it with eric holder -- [applause] we've had it with hillary clinton and the rest of this administration. [applause] and lord knows americans have sure had it with the arrogant, sanctimonious, gun-hating liars who call themselves the national news media in this country. [applause] we, we respect and we admire the law enforcement officers, the dedicated field officers who work every single day in this country under difficult conditions.
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but there's a big difference between the good field agents and their bureaucratic, politicking bosses back at atf headquarters in washington d.c. [applause] when it comes to those scheming bureaucrats in washington, gun owners have had it. our rights have been attacked before, and the political elites in the media have often conspired to shame and blame american gun owners for violent crime. together we have all fought with pride and defeated those threats. but we've never witnessed anything like the rotten level of corruption, conspiracy and cover up confronting us today. all because they hate americans and our rights more than they care about the lives of innocent people. i'll say that again. our government has been willing to let people die to advance
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their assault on the second amendment. our southern border proves it. when atf officials order lawful gun dealers to make illegal sales, that's corrupt. when atf authorizes and watches thousands of guns walk across the border and fall into the hands of mexican drug cartels, that's not just bizarre law enforcement, it's government-sanctioned gun running. when the administration stonewalls congressional investigations, that's a conspiracy to cover up the truth a. and when almost every reporter in america ignores the story, it doesn't just prove the media's biased, it proves they're cowards. [applause]
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when janet napolitano declares the mexican border is safe, that'sty honest. that's dishonest. when obama and holder and clinton blame american gun owners for mexican drug crimes even as our own government is running guns south, that is politics at its most cynical and most despicable. operation fast and furious may have gotten one or perhaps two federal agents killed. and countless other innocent victims have been murdered with the illegal guns that our own government allowed into mexico all to advance a political agenda. over and over and over americans heard the president, the attorney general, the secretary of state and members of congress
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claim that mexico's violent crime was the result of american firearms flowing south of the border. they blamed our rights even as they allowed illegal straw buyers to walk free. right across the border. they engaged in a massive gun-running operation sponsored by our own american tax dollars. and these schemers have the gall to say it's our fault? that the second amendment is the blame? the second amendment is to blame? eric holder, you saw it, said he didn't know about the operation. he's the attorney general of the united states of america. the highest law enforcement officer in our land. he's in charge, and he didn't know? then who's minding the store
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over at the justice department? if holder didn't know, holder's gotta go. [cheers and applause] i call on president obama to order atf and the justice department officials to testify before the united states congress and fully disclose every detail of their rogue operation. mr. president, it's time to come clean. stop the stonewalling and stop the lies. [applause] because the lying is getting people killed every single day. the justice department called
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mexico's drug cartels the biggest organized crime threat to the united states of america. over a million gang members now active in every state in the united states. cartels are bringing drugs, murder, torture and mayhem right in to our neighborhoods. the administration doesn't care. while calling for more gun laws, they've done nothing to crack down on the border and everything to make it worse. janet napolitano, the secretary of homeland security, recently told americans the border was safe. well, janet, you must have been thinking about our friends in canada. [laughter] because if you're talking about the mexican border, what you said is either clueless, or it's
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dishonest. i went to our southern border. in fact, i've been to the worlder more than the president. despite what janet says -- [applause] despite what janet says, the border is anything but safe. it's white hot, and it's chilling. take a look. >> the smugglers down here own the night really. they have the high points, they can see us coming for miles. >> almost like you're in afghanistan doing missions. >> yeah. they're watching your every move. they're basing their movements on what we're doing. >> and they're likely to have people on this high ground, you were saying? >> yeah, absolutely. they'll post people up there to let the bosses know when law enforcement's in the area. if it's clear for the drugs to come through -- >> they pull guns on you in a heartbeat. >> they have military precision, and we have to counter that. they're using military tactics
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on american soil, and it's just unreal. >> every citizen of our country needs to know what you're dealing with down here. they really do. because it's going to impact them. and their lives and their kids' lives down the road. >> this problem here affects the entire country because these cartels are recruiting our youth. in particular a very well known, a very violet group, the severs, we know they send sleeper cells into the u.s., and the violence associated with cartels is carrying over, and they're making our u.s. gangs even more violent, and they're arming them better and teaching them tactics to use. so it's a bad combination. >> it's crazy. it's impacting every city in the united states. >> absolutely. these cartels realize that they can rely, now, on the u.s. gangs to further their criminal enterprise, and they're doing that. >> i'm here 60 miles ip land from the border. janet napolitano says this whole area is safe. don't believe it. there are criminals and drug
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gangs coming over this border every day in in this one sector. over 40,000 already have a criminal record in the united states. and washington, d.c. has its head in the sand. finish the ranchers that live down here, they're alone every single night. and i'll tell you this, they know with absolute certainty that the only thing they have is the second amendment to the constitution of the united states to protect 'em. >> it's not safe down here. i don't care how many times they say it is. >> yeah. >> it's not, and if it were, she'd be willing co-- to come down here and spend a night by herself. and i guarantee none of them will. >> you're all saying the same thing, and yet there's a total disconnect with washington d.c. it's unbelievable. >> the argument by the politicians towards us is that you're not a border county, that the borders are more secure than ever. essentially, you're looking at what protects the u.s. from plaxico is just -- mexico is just desert to desert.
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>> it's the day-to-day life of every american. >> absolutely. and if we don't get a handle on it, it's going to be a lot less life for the citizens of our country. >> yes, sir. always at the front of my brain is what am i handing off to my kids as a country, and what mess do they have to clean up after we leave? >> ladies and gentlemen, with us today is one of the good guys trying to do something about the border. he's been threatened by the cartels and undermined by government bureaucrats. yet day in and day out he continues to put his life at risk to keep our country safe. please join me in thanking a real american hero from panel county, arizona sheriff of paul babew. paul? sheriff? [applause]
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[applause] >> sheriff, we're honored you're here with us today. we look forward to hearing you tonight at the celebration of american values. at our southern border, government has failed and endangered us. just as government has failed and endangered us from violent crime everywhere. they don't care. they care about sensational events that capture national attention and drive their agenda. like columbine, virginia tech,
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fort hood and tucson. the media wastes no time in turning deranged monsters into celebrities even though that's the last thing the media should do. it creates a madman hero for every potential crazy copycat out there. it's sick, it's wrong, and the media in this country ought to be ashamed of themselves for doing it. [applause] what the media won't anytime is that in each of those tragedies the mass killers, they all had the same decisive advantage. government gun-free zones and anti-self-defense laws that protected the safety of no one except the killers. and condemned the victims to death without so much as a prayer.
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that's right. our own policies gave more protection to the killers than to the innocent. government gun-free zones have become the hunting ground of evil, deranged monsters. but nbc and "the new york times," they're not going to admit the truth. the media and the political elites want us to believe that if we just pass another law or two, we'll all be safer. but it's a lie. if we could legislate evil out of people's hearts, we would have done it long ago. and when they use tragedy to push for banning this firearm or that magazine or shut down lawful gun shows, it's a fraud. their laws don't work, their lies don't ring true, and the only thing we know for certain is government has failed. government has failed us with our money and our financial institutions. it's failed in running our post
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offices and our trains. it's failed in enforcing our immigration laws, our drug laws, and our laws against violent criminals with guns. they can't even pass a budget, let alone keep an air traffic controller awake at night. [laughter] when et comes -- when it comes to protecting us from the mayhem of a violent madman, government is an abject failure. worse, by its lies and laws and lack of forcement -- enforcement, government policies are getting us killed and making us prisoners in a society of violence. by the time i finish this speech, two americans will be slain, six women will be forcibly raped, 27 of us will be robbed and 50 more are going to
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be beaten. more than 25,000 violent crimes are committed every week many this country. in this country. these are fbi statistics. during a typical week, 300 americans are murdered. 200 of us are killed by more than 27,000 drunk drivers; 7,800 of us are robbed; 15,000 of our neighbors are violently assaulted; and 1,700 american women and girls are raped. that's just one week. that's the harsh reality. that's the very real danger. that we all get up and face every single day. but the media, they don't care.
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everyday victims aren't celebrities. they don't draw ratings, they don't draw sponsors. the political elites? they don't care. everyday victims don't help drive their political agenda. everyday victims murdered, beaten, robbed and raped every single day are all too often commonly ignored and way too quickly forgotten. the politicians and the media systematically deny and shroud the reality of just how dangerous daily life can be in this country. like colette. girl from a small, mid western town. the victim of a brutal predator who was recently freed on parole. colette was home in her apartment. she was ready to go out. she heard a knock on the door. she thought it was a friend. it wasn't. it was the beginning of four
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hours of hell. please watch. >> it's beyond terror. just a knock on the door changed everything. he held me there for probably at least four hours, the whole time repeatedly raping me, torturing me, shooting me up with coke and meth. i kept begging him and an hour or two into it i asked him just, please, kill me. but he said i wasn't looking to do that. i wanted a piece of ass, and you just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. in fact, just a few months ago i spoke to the original arresting officer, and he told me that he knew of nine prior women that this person had done this to and not one of 'em had the guts to pursue it in court. i sent letters to the parole board literally begging them, please, don't met this person out. i mean, look at his history. this isn't the kind of person, this isn't the type of crime
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that he's just going to stop. these type of people don't have the ability. >> the last time he came up for parole, they decided to let him out. >> yes. >> did they tell you why? >> part of the response was, well, when guys are this age and they've been in prison for a long time, they just kind of tend to want to go out and just go about their lives and live the rest of their lives out quietly. >> quietly? peace of mind? what about your peace of mind? >> there is none. it's still with me every day. probably why i don't like christmas time because the trial started, like, a week after christmas. and that's to this day, i hate it. i'm very afraid of death of after this experience because i thought i was going to die, and it's so horrifyingly terrible. my biggest fear? oh, hand down him hurting the next person. he's out there right now as we speak, and that's just -- that's wrong on every level. they don't deserve to have the
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right to walk amongst you and i. the system definitely failed. i feel the system did fail. >> government failed that woman just like it failed jo. on a cold morning this past february, joe was on a new york subway. he was headed for work when he was attacked by a deranged monster that had already killed four other innocent victims. joe, just ap everyday guy -- an everyday day guy, a dad commuting to his job who for no sane reason at all became the unsuspecting target of a slasher. please watch. >> i got on the train. first thing i wonder, is this car that it happened in? and i relive it every day i get on that train. he had no mercy, i'm not even sure he had a soul. looks at me right in the eye, and he takes out this big knife,
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holds it up and says, you're going to do. and he lunged at me. the blood's coming out with every heartbeat, and that's when the panic set in. on this wound he cut me so deep, you could see my skull, my tricep. i actually grabbed his hand, and i held it there, and he dropped the knife. i definitely had an angel with me that day for sure. police officer comes up to me with a mug shot, and he says, well, is this guy that did this to you? he said, well, you're a hero because he killed four people last night. i think his plan was for me to be another victim, and my plan was to get off the train and see my family again. i thought i was lucky every time i hugged them since the day they were born. now especially, you know, i realize how lucky i am. my life will never be the same. i don't handle myself well in crowd to begin with. now i can't even walk through a corridor of people. every time they hit you it's
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like bam, bam, bam. it's just simple things like not putting things off because tomorrow's not guaranteed. i'm fortunate you're able to speak to me. he killed four people, and their voices will never be heard. i would love to just be face to face with them. >> gellman has had several run-ins with the law for drugs and graffiti. >> if criminal justice system fails with this, then i think i lose faith in humanity. there's no doubt this guy did this. light him up, that's how i feel. >> government could not protect joe, just an ordinary guy getting up in our country and going to work. government failed him. and colette. two americans just like any of us in this room this morning. a woman at home, a guy going to work. their violent reality is a reality that every american faces every single day, a
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reality this dallas woman never imagined until two weeks ago. please watch. >> when you see this video, you'll know exactly why they decided to release this. this happened back on march 29th, and police are saying there's got to be somebody who must have seen this. that's a woman being beaten. robbery detectives are saying that the public's assistance is desperately needed. two suspects caught on the surveillance video attacking this woman before dragging her across the parking lot and stealing her purse. this is over a purse. and her, you know, i saw some pictures of her a short time ago very, very injured woman. >> that woman is every one of us. she represents any of the daughters and wives in this room and throughout this country. it is sickening the way these predators in this country target
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women. cowards lurking out there in the shadows in search of their next prey. there's only one real solution against cowardness, a solution that would save lives, and it would drastically cut violent crime; armed women. [applause] confront the cowardly predators. arm america's women. [applause] every american wife and mother and daughter, every law-abiding adult woman should be trained, armed and encouraged to carry a firearm for personal protection. every elected official who cares about violent crime should hold a press conference tomorrow morning and announce full-throated support for the arming of american women.
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[applause] any politician in opposition who whines about another idiotic gun law proves to be just another elitist snob who doesn't give a damn about incident victims and doesn't care about reducing violent crime in this country. arm america's women. save them from the animals that roam our land. [applause] picking them off one by one. empower the daughters and mothers and wives we all cherish to fight for their lives. political exploitation of tragedy is nothing but corruption. and their call for more gun control is a siren song of hip
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kits -- hypocrites. because the politicians don't really hate guns, they just hate ours. our guns. and our rights. for them gun control means they control us. the elites care about their money, their banks, so they surround them with armed guards. american airports, office buildings, power plants, courthouses, even sports stadiums are all protected by armed security. even mayor bloomberg benefits from armed security. members of congress, guarded by the capitol police, armed. and the president is protected by the armed secret service. celebrities and the wealthy including members of the news media are protected by armed guards. do we care less about our homes,
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our kids and our schools? are they really less worthy of the full measure of armed protection? americans have had enough of government failure, and americans have had enough of government hypocrisy. it's time for change, and i mean a real change. government can't protect us. but it can and it has endangered us. by restricting our freedom to protect ourselves. it's time right here this morning to acknowledge what we all know in our hearts to be true, that the best way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. [applause]
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and the presence of a firearm in the hands of a good person makes us all safer. it's just that simple, and it's just that true. so no more. no more lies and laws and corruption and government failure. no more. at the scene of the crime, there's only the criminal and the victim. the police, the well-intention -- and they all know this despite all their intentions -- they always come later. and the victim is all too often forgotten. it's time the victims in this country got a fighting chance. every american deserves that. it is our right, it is our time to dmoond that member -- to demand that members of congress honor that right and immediately enact national right to carry reciprocity all over this land.
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[cheers and applause] >> we're going to do it with your help, believe me. the second amendment to the u.s. constitution has never been more relevant than it is today. a well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. [applause] the founding fathers, they sure had it right from the beginning. our security is in our own hands
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insured by the bearing of arms in the hands of good people all across this country. the safety of our homes and our neighborhoods and of our kids' schools and of the people that we all love most is in our own hands. government has failed. as citizens, we have been abandoned, left alone to face personal danger that's out there every single day. well, we may be alone, but we breathe the same free air of our founding fathers. empowered by the second amendment to live secure and to live free. our liberty in this country lives in the second amendment to the constitution. the fundamental right that separates us from be -- from all
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other nations on earth. that freedom makes america better than other countries. that freedom makes us stronger. the duty of our forefathers now rests with us. to defend and preserve our freedom. and we must -- each of us must answer that call with all of our might. will we fight to preserve our liberty? >> yes! [applause] >> they can't hear you yet at the the white house. let me ask you again. will we fight to keep our nation strong and safe and free? >> yes! >> will we fight and prevail against the enemies of freedom? let me hear ya! >> yes! >> our promise to america is
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that there will always be a second amendment and that the second amendment will always be the people's first freedom. we will fight to defend that freedom. we will fight for the rights of all americans to live free. we will fight, and we will prevail. we will prevail because we must. we will prevail because, by god, we are the nra! thank you very much, and let's fight for freedom every single day! [cheers and applause] thank you! thank you.
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[applause] >> thank you, wayne. very, very good. i neglected to mention that the report of the secretary has been printed, and it is also available at the entrance to the hall. with that, and now the report of the executive director of the nra institute on legislative action, chris w. cox. chris cox! >> thank you, mr. president. good morning. [applause] before i begin, i'd like to pause for a personal note. as you know, the last two decades have truly been an era of restoration of our second amendment freedom. now, wayne didn't know i was going to mention this today, and i'm sure you're probably starting to feel uncomfortable and wonder where i'm going with it. but for all of his visionary leadership, dedication, toughness and fighting for our rights, i think we should take a
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moment to recognize that this weekend marks the 20th year of wayne lapierre's service as our nra executive vice president and chief executive officer. [applause] >> now, wayne would be the first to credit ohs, but our -- others, but our success are in no small way a credit to wayne. under his leadership our membership has more than doubled. right to carry laws have quadrupled. hunter protection laws are on the books in this all 50 states. and all of those firearms manufacturers in this convention center are now protected from reckless lawsuits. some of you may recall that as a young federal lobbyist, it was wayne who worked alongside jim mcclure and harold volcker to make the firearms protection act
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law of the land in 1986. and if you've watched him go toe the toe with -- toe to toe with the national news media, i'm sure you'll agree the second amendment has never had a more formidable defender. although wayne's a very public figure, i have to tell you he's a pretty private guy. but there's a side of him that most people never get to see; a big-hearted man and a compassionate humanitarian. we always joke that we spend all our time protecting our rights and not enough time exercising our rights. but i have to tell you he's a skilled outdoorsman and a great hunter. he's not the first public figure to find solace in the field. wayne, i apologize for pulling this on you, but i've got to ask you to come back up one more time. you mean a lot to all of us, and as a good friend you've meant a lot to me personally. for all you've done for your cause and our fellow man, we
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congratulate you and thank you for your 20 years of devoted service. on behalf of the nra board of directors, our staff and the four million members nationwide and for all of us, please accept this pair of connecticut shotguns in 12 and 20 gauge to commemorate this day. [cheers and applause] [applause] >> thank you very much. i am, i am really honored and surprised. i -- nra is about our membership, and it's about giving voice to our membership
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in this fight for freedom. and i can't tell you what an honor and how proud i am to fight alongside all of you and the rest of our members for freedom every single day in this country. thank you very much. [applause] >> as the nra's chief lobbyist, there's certain skills you need when dealing with your opponents. one is understanding the english language and what words mean. because in politics everybody's always trying to change everything. you've seen it. liberal is out, now progress i is in. gun bans are out, now gun safety's in. even if it means no guns at all. the national coalition to ban handguns is now the coalition to stop gun violence. handgun control incorporated is now the brady campaign.
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and if they're not changing the words, they're definitely trying to change what they mean. i mean, how else can you end up with a group that calls itself the american hunters and shooters' association yet wants to ban the guns you need to hunt or shoot? that's the problem. with all the renaming and redefining of words, it's hard to know what anybody's saying anymore. so let's revisit a few words today from my political dictionary. and i'll start with one that's not politically correct, but it's all too politically common. jackass. [laughter] it means a stupid person or fool. and, folks, it was not easy to pick an example to show you because so many people i deal with meet that definition. [laughter] but here's one. please watch. >> nra should just change their name to the assassins' lobby because that's what they are. you can applaud that.
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[applause] somebody should applaud that. i'm so tired of hearing about the second amendment and the constitution. if you love guns, just admit it like it's a vice. it's not good for you or anybody else, you just like it. but stop the bull [bleep] about the second amendment in the constitution, and somebody also should tell all these people, these nra types who think it's great to be armed. and these guys always think that, you know, it's great to have a gun because because if sd stuff goes down, i'll be able to stop the bad guy. this is your fantasy, [bleep]. you would never be able to do that. >> first of all, bill, that's not our fantasy, it's every gun owner's worst nightmare. but bad stuff does go down every day. and americans use guns two and a half million times a year to protect themselves and their families. the truth is it often takes a good guy with a gun to stop a bad guy with a gun, and that's why rosie o'donnell and all the
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celebrity buddies have armed body guards. so sorry, bill, we will never stop fighting for the second amendment or the constitution that also protects his first amendment right to be a complete jackass. [cheers and applause] here's another one we see a lot in the gun debate, hypocrite. that's a person who acts in contradiction to his or her stated beliefs. this is another long list. but i picked the best example i could find, film maker spike lee. here's spike after the tragedy in tucson. >> there's been so much discussion about discord in this country. >> right. >> and the level of rhetoric and not saying that it was responsible for what happened, but that it just adds to negativity in general. >> here's my take in it. i think that as film makers, as
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politicians, as artists we have to understand that all -- whatever we do goes out in the universe, and you should be aware of what you're doing. and you cannot just say, well, i just did this, and i had nothing to do with what happened. that's not the case. >> folks, it's interesting how some people are so sensitive to rhetoric these days. but here is the deal. if it's rhetoric they disagree with, then it's too dangerous for the public to hear. but when it's rhetoric coming out of their own mouths, well, now, that's a different story. remember this? >> not long ago a very popular young director named spike lee ridiculed my work on behalf of the second amendment to the constitution. spike said i should be shot for my beliefs. [laughter] at a press conference last spring, the cannes festival, spike seized by a sudden attack of mouth said i should be shot in the head.
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>> listen, spike, you spewed hateful venom calling for the murder of an american icon, a husband, a father, a christian and a civil rights hero who integrated the screen actors' guild. it was charlton heston who opened up hollywood so african-americans like you could become millionaires. so don't lecture us about rhetoric. instead of rubbing your -- running your mouth, why don't you just do the right thing and say, thank you, mr. heston. [applause] another common character in the gun debate is the liar. the liar is someone who doesn't tell the truth not by mistake, but on purpose. and lies can have serious consequences. just look at u.s. supreme court justice sonia sotomayor. during her senate confirmation
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hearings, she said under oath that the second amendment is an individual right. it was settled law and beyond debate. yet less than a year later when she had a chance to prove it in the mcdonald case, she did just the opposite. you know, some people warned me not to accuse a supreme court justice of lying, but what's she going to do, go back on her word and try to erase the second amendment from the constitution? the too late, she already did. i may not agree with the president's supreme court picks. i know we don't agree on much. but words do matter. and ideas have consequences. some things are worth fighting for, even dying for. you know what i'm talking about, or you wouldn't be here today. i'm talking about freedom. it's freedom that makes america the greatest country on earth. but look at our society, look at who people listen to. bill maher? spike lee?
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and look at who the media puts up on a pedestal. lindsay lohan? charlie sheen? these people aren't winners, they're losers. [applause] but enough of the negative words in my political dictionary. let's look at a few of the positive. here's our next word: success. finish success is a favorable or desired outcome, and you've achieved a lot of it. we now have worker protection laws in this 13 states, emergency power laws in 30 states and statewide preemption laws in 48 states. and, friends, there's nothing more important than your right to self-defense. thanks to you, right to carry is now a right restored in more than 40 states and counting. and last month wyoming restored your right to carry without a permit. what that means is from vermont to alaska and arizona to wyoming
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you don't need anyone's permission to protect yourself, and that's the way it should be. [applause] i think it's morally reprehensible for any politician to say how, when or where an honest person can defend themself. it's your god-given right to defend yourself. and that's a big reason why the castle doctrine is no important. because the law should be on your side, not on the criminal's. twenty-five states have adopted it so far, and unfortunately here in pennsylvania last year, governor ed rendell vetoed it. but last fall's elections changed that. so help is on the way, and thanks to a new governor, tom corps bit, the keystone state is about to become number 26. [cheers and applause]
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that's why elections matter and why the november elections were a success by any measure. thanks to freedom first voters like you, pro-second amendment candidates won hundreds of races all across the country at every level. and, folks, election success can become a steppingstone for even more victories in the future. if you want proof, just look at the past. in 2000 you helped elect president bush who appointed attorney general john ashcroft who changed the government's position by clearly stating in a letter to the national rifle association that the second amendment is our individual right. but that was just the beginning. in 2004 by keeping john kerry out of the white house, your votes put two new pro-freedom justices on the u.s. supreme court. add decades of your nra's legislative victories, decades of nra's scholarly work and
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decades of nra's success in the legal arena and that, ladies and gentlemen, snowballed into our next word: historic. historic means something has great and lasting importance. the recent heller and mcdonald decisions absolutely live up to that definition. folks, when it takes a country 200 years to recognize one of the freedoms in its bill of rights, that's historic. but they were historic, but our freedom's not secure. because both of these cases were decided by a razor-thin majority of just one vote. if just one justice had voted the other way, our right to keep and bear arms would be gone. but that's not the only danger we face. at the united nations, freedom-hating foreign governments are working to eliminate firearms own ownership around the world and right here at home. you've seen it on our southern
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border. narco terrorist violet is being exploited d violence is being exploited. and if that's not bad enough, mexico just announced they want to sue american gun companies. their drugs and violence are flowing across the border into our country, but they're suing us? if anything, we should be suing them. but it's not just a tax from abroad. here at home they're worming their way into our kids' class rooms, teaching that guns are evil, hunting is cruel, and the freedoms and traditions we cherish the most are wrong or outdated or to blame for all the world's problems. and you all know who's funding it, billionaire puppeteers like new york mayor michael bloomberg and globalist banker george soros. we all know they're not going away, and neither is their money. folks, there's a lot going on.
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there's a lot at stake, and we don't have much time. so i'll say it without apology, we need your help. we need more members, and we need more resources. here's why. president obama's already launched his re-election effort. he kicked it off early to get a lead on raising money. they're saying he could be the first presidential candidate in history to spend more than a billion dollars. we're not talking about a billion dollar race, we're talking about a billion dollar candidate. what do you lose the if president obama wins -- what do you lose if president obama wins? you tell me. what if he appoints just one more anti-gun justice to the u.s. supreme court and we go from one-vote victories to one-vote defeat? what does that cost? praying for the health of five supreme court justices is not a strategy you want to stake your freedom on. because once it's lost, freedom can be almost impossible to reclaim.
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you see proof of that every day in the news as people are killed around the world for the freedoms that many americans take for granted. which brings us to our next word: here e row. that's someone who shows great courage, ability and nobility. our heros are the true patriots, the u.s. armed forces, who know firsthand what freedom costs. [applause] but too often they're ignored by the political class, marginalized by the media and simply forgotten by far too many. we owe it to them to defend freedom here with the same selfless devotion to duty that they bring to the job every day in deployments around the world. that's why the nra launched a new membership outreach for every american man and woman in uniform. it's called nra life of duty.


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